As early as November 17th, 1958, just a few weeks after his election, Pope John named Montini Cardinal. He was the first pick for the new Pope who had been elected on October 28 of that year. A pope’s naming of his first cardinal is usually an indication of the direction he wants his papacy to proceed. Pope John XXIII and Cardinal Montini had been friends for most of their episcopal careers.
Milan was seen as exile for Montini during the final years of Pope Pius XII’s reign.
The new Pope left him in Milan so he could draw the Italian bishops into the spirit of the Second Vatican Council.
The reverse side of the medal has the coat of arms of Blessed Paul VI, and his name, and the inscription, In Nomine Domini: in the Name of the Lord.
The medal measures 36 mm in diameter, is in excellent condition, and is from 1958.
Any item belonging to or associated with Pope St. Paul VI has become even more valued as a result of his October 2018 canonization.
About Saint Ambrose:
In 374, following the death of their bishop, the Church in Milan was bitterly divided. With violent tempers threatening to erupt, Ambrose, the provincial governor, went to the basilica and exhorted the assembly to find a peaceful solution. Suddenly a voice rose up: “Ambrose for bishop.” The cry was quickly taken up by the entire assembly. Ambrose was horrified. Not only was he a layman: he was not even baptized. Nevertheless, he acquiesced. Within one week he was baptized, confirmed, ordained, and consecrated bishop of Milan.
Despite his lack of preparation, Ambrose made up for lost time. He gave away all his property, adopted an austere and strenuous habit of prayer, and immersed himself in the study of Scripture and theology. He became the protector of the poor and oversaw the preparation of catechumens and the training of clergy. He was responsible for innumerable conversions, most famously that of St. Augustine, whom he personally instructed and baptized.
Though Ambrose wrote many books, he is best remembered for his deft leadership of the Church in a tumultuous era. The Arian heresy, which denied the full divinity of Christ, had divided the Church into rival factions. When the emperor tried to impose civic harmony by ordering Ambrose to cede one of his churches for use by the Arians, Ambrose refused. “The emperor is in the church,” he said, “not over it.” The emperor backed down.
Papal Artifacts honors St. Ambrose on this, his feast day, and is grateful for the gift of his life to our Church.
St. Ambrose, pray for us!
NOTE: Information about and an artifact from St. Charles Borromeo may be found on Papal History/Saints & Blesseds/Charles Borromeo. He was a giant during the Catholic Reformation. It is well worth reading about him. St. Charles Borromeo, pray for us.